Sean Brody

Executive Director

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Born into the epicenter of the surf industry in Southern California, Sean Brody cut his teeth at Rusty Surfboards, where he climbed the ropes from shop grom, to Surf Instructor, to Staff Photographer and Digital Media Manager. Brody has traveled the world surfing, photographing, working in community development and has completed a Master’s Degree in Hospitality Tourism Management with an Emphasis in Sustainable Surf Tourism along the way (from San Diego State University).

Brody has had his hands in many surfing development and philanthropy projects, including founding the international non-profit organization, Surf Resource Network, co-founding the first sustainable surf tourism operations in Liberia, West Africa- Kwepunha Retreat and Kwepunha Surf Academy, serving as the Africa Development Adviser for the International Surfing Association, and taking on the the role of the International Surfing Association’s Membership Manager- where he consulted for 97 National Surfing Federations across the globe, worked to get surfing included in the Olympic Games, helped to conceptualize and produce the first ever World Adaptive Surfing Championship, and manged the global Educational Programs for the ISA.

Brody has now launched the Surf Education Academy to help ensure that everyone in the water has an amazing surfing experience by offering premium educational programming that focuses on safety, quality, and best practices through hands on learning.

 

Alfredo Ramirez

Director of Surfing Programs

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Alfredo is a bi-lingual and bi-cultural San Diego native who has lived in Baja California, Mexico, and fully understands both the Hispanic and U.S. border markets. Alfredo is an avid surfer with a competition background. During his twenties he finished in the top ten in the Mexican surfing nationals getting him qualified for the ISA World Surfing Games in Lisbon, Portugal, where he also was assigned team captain and saw his leadership skills start to flourish.

He holds a dual MBA from Mexico and Canada. Alfredo is an enthusiastic waterman and outdoorsman and that lead him to hold various surf community positions on both sides of the border. He is the former president of the Baja California Surfing Association, and the founder and current Director of United Athletes of the Pacific Ocean (UAPO), with the mission to promote youth surfing in both California's through surf competition, cultural exchange and education.

Alfredo’s extensive travels have taken him to Tahiti, Hawaii, Indonesia, Europe, Canada, United States, The Caribbean Islands, and Mexico. Always looking for a new adventure.

 

JarRod Covington

Director of Stand Up Paddle Programs

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Born in Beaufort, NC, Jarrod Covington has spent his life on the water. Although surfing and windsurfing were constants in his childhood, his interests quickly expanded to include kiting, paddle boarding, fishing, and a great deal more. 

Covington graduated from UNC Wilmington with a degree in Finance, but ever loyal to the southeastern coast, he walked away from success on Wall Street. Forecasting the potential for stand-up paddleboarding in the area, he founded Wrightsville SUP in 2011. The business has thrived on Covingtons own dynamic and multi-faceted interests and now facilitates rentals and lessons in a variety of water sports and activities.

Jarod's Training and Experience Include:

  •             Lifeguard, First Aid, CPR-PR Certified.
  •             U.S. Coast Guard Certified Captain
  •             ACA SUP I Certified
  •             WPA Certified
  •             Paddlefit Level III Coach/Affiliate
  •             PADI Scuba and Nitrox

SUP Race and Competition Results:

  • Best Local Pro - “WB SUP Pro-Am” -  May 2015
  • 1st Place Overall Male - “Brunswick Water Fest” -  June 7, 2014
  • 1st Place All Waterman - “KONA Classic SUP” - May, 2013
  • 1st Place Mens - “East Coast Paddle Surf Championship” -  April 27, 2013
  • 1st Place Elite Male - “Wrightsville Beach Biathlon” -  March 23-24, 2013
  • 1st Place Elite Male - “Up the River WITH a Paddle” -  November 17, 2012
  • 1st Place Elite Male- “Wrightsville Beach Biathlon” -  March 23-24, 2012
  • 2nd Place Elite Male - “Surf To Sound Challenge” -  November, 2013           
  • 2nd Place Elite Male - “Surf To Sound Challenge” -  November, 2012
  • BAMF Award - "Carolina Cup" - 2013   
     

Jim lockwood

Director of Water safety

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Jim Lockwood has been a professional lifeguard for the City of San Diego Fire Rescue Lifeguard Division since 1986. He spent 12 years on the ocean honing his ocean surf, lifesaving, and personal watercraft skills. He then transferred to the San Diego Lifeguards Boating Safety Unit, where he received specialized rescue boat handling and boat rescue training. With over 26 years as a professional rescuer, Jim has logged countless water rescues and medical aides.

Jim's training and experience includes:

  • Emergency Medical Technician, CPR, AED
  • Rescue Boat Operator, Hard Hull
  • Marine Fire Boat Operator
  • Fox Studios Production of the Titanic: Production Diver/Water Safety
  • Inflatable Rescue Boat Operator and Instructor
  • CA Dept of Boating and Waterways Marine Firefighter
  • Boat Accident Investigation and Reconstruction Certification
  • Boating Navigation Certification
  • Rescue Three Swift Water Rescue Technician I and II
  • San Diego Fire Rescue River Rescue Team 
  • USCG Helicopter Training
  • Law Enforcement PC 832A Certification
  • Water Safety/Water Stunts 
  • Water Safety on a number of triathlon
  • Big Wave World Tour PWC Operator
     

Jon richards

Director of therapeutic recreation

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Jon Richards is the Supervising Therapeutic Recreational Therapist for the City of San Diego and he has dedicated his life to creating sporting opportunities for those from all walks of life.  Jon started the San Diego Adaptive Sports Foundation, was the Southern California Regional Program Director for the Special Olympics, and acted as the Adaptive Surfing Adviser for the International Surfing Association's World Adaptive Surfing Championship.  Jon sneaks in waves whenever he can and continues to be a driving force in the movement of Adaptive Surfing.
 

John Taussig

Director of Wilderness Medicine

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John's all over the place. He works as a paramedic on a Medical Evacuation Helicopter, is a licensed Captain, a weathered sailor, and the Executive Director for Back Country Medical Guides. He has worked as an EMT and Paramedic for 14 years in Santa Cruz, Seattle, Jackson Hole, and Bozeman, Montana in a variety of contexts- from the ambulance to ski patrol to helicopter. John has degrees in Neuroscience and Biochemistry from Montana State University.

Jessica Brody

Director of Development

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Jessica Brody was born in Minnesota and after a brief stint in Hawaii she was bit hard by the surfing bug and settled in San Diego, where she could combine her passion for helping others with making sure her hair never fully dries.

Jessica has a Master’s Degree in Strategic Leadership, which she has put into action with the plethora of projects she has been involved with.  She sat on the Board of Directors for four years for the life-changing organization, Just in Time for Foster Youth, and played an integral role in developing a pathway for youth exiting the Foster Care system at the age of 18. Jessica’s involvement with Surf Resource Network and Kwepunha Retreat in Liberia, West Africa have helped spawn and empower the first generation of female surfers in Liberia.

Constantly on the go, Jessica continues to change lives while juggling an infant daughter, remaining active in Adaptive Surfing clinics, and driving development forward at Surf Education Academy.